[unrev-II] Fwd: Re: [announce] "What goes around, comes around."

From: Jack Park (jackpark@thinkalong.com)
Date: Thu Sep 13 2001 - 11:05:07 PDT

  • Next message: Alex Shapiro: "Re: [unrev-II] Fwd: Re: [announce] "What goes around, comes around.""

    >From: "Don Watson" <dewatson@sunflower.com>
    >Sender: owner-announce@isss.org
    >If systems science is to realistically address the problem of human
    >violence, it must be framed as the science of wholes. To
    >accomplish this, we must abandon the traditional anthropocentric
    >stance, and consistently consider events in the context of Earth's
    >whole ecosystem.
    >This means that scientists must conceptualize the events that we
    >consider "tragedies" as elements of the greater dynamic. This
    >won't be easy because scientists are notoriously narcissistic and
    >tunnel-visioned. After all, scientists named their own species
    >"Homo sapiens sapiens" -- "bipedal tool-making primate, wise
    >wise." Imagine that!
    >If humans were truly wise, they would be quite humble about their
    >wisdom, realizing that many species--e.g., sharks--have survived
    >for hundreds of millions of years because they don't pretend to be
    >anything but sharks--and certainly not stewards of nature.
    >The recurring inter-species violence of humans expresses innate
    >characteristics of the human species. Egocentricity, grandiosity,
    >tribalism, and territoriality are well-known human characteristics
    >that contribute to the violence. Consistently overlooked, however,
    >are Gaia's responses to the destabilizations caused by human
    >Long ago, the human species was symbiotic with the other
    >species of the biosphere, but it has long since overgrown its
    >habitat. Humanity has become an infectious agent causing a
    >systemic disease in Gaia--perhaps analogous to a common cold.
    >We can expect Gaia to respond to this cold by sneezing. And
    >when Gaia sneezes, the infectious agents will suffer, of course.
    >Gaia's homeostatic mechanisms will seek out the infectious
    >agent's own characteristics to use against it. And what
    >characteristics are more useful for this purpose than egocentricity,
    >grandiosity, tribalism, and territoriality?
    >Now we can ask, "What can we humans do to increase the
    >probability of our survival?"
    >I've tried to answer this question in my novel, _The Last Miracle_.
    >I've also addressed it in an essay, "Is Homo sapiens sapiens a
    >Wise Species?"
    >Don Watson

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